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Out in Theaters: ‘PATRIOT’S DAY’

Michael Bay catches a lot of flack for his bombastic tendencies behind the camera. The portmanteau Bayhem refers to the distinctly American director’s excessive inclinations behind the camera; his impulsive need to aggrandize nothingness through dynamic camera movement and, of course, ‘splosions. It makes for busy filmmaking the equivalent of a massively oversized pair of fake breasts bouncing up and down in front of your face, whacking you in the nose with each rise and fall. There’s so much happening at any given moment and from one scene to the next that there is little to no contrast. Just a constant thwacking of the noggin. Everything is turned up to 11 so that even the legitimately intense moments are overshadowed by other elevated humdrum. Read More

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Talking with Atticus Ross of LOVE & MERCY, GONE GIRL, SOCIAL NETWORK

There are few composers who intrigue me enough to want to pursue an interview: John Williams, Hans Zimmer, Alexandre Desplat. Atticus Ross. Unlike many of his contemporaries, Ross lends his talent out sparsely – completing just a pair of film scores each year while his peers often churn out four to seven. He earned his name alongside Nine Inch Nails band leader Trent Reznor scoring David Fincher‘s The Social Network, a game-changing composition that went on to Academy Award acclaim. Since then, Ross has joined each of Fincher’s projects working alongside Reznor to provide dark, harrowing musical compositions to underscore Fincher’s devilish palette. Read More

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Out in Theaters: LOVE & MERCY

Film originally seen at Seattle International Film Festival ’15.

It’s no mystery that Brian Wilson was a tortured soul. Look no further than single “Heroes and Villains”, originally released on 1967’s Smiley Smile, and peel back the oily layer of Wilson’s lyrical metaphors to glance into the depths of his tortured soul. In the tune’s restless battlescape, cowboys and indians facing off in a dust-blown shanty town stood in for the forces of “good” and “evil” he saw himself trapped between. A perennial internal tug-of-war born from his turbulent upbringing and inbred insecurity. Psychedelics informed much of Wilson’s Pet Sounds/Smile era – and would later lead to a misdiagnosis that was almost the end of the pop genius – and allowed Wilson the power to probe the darkest corners of his painful past with bright melodies and rich orchestral arrangements. Similarly, Love & Mercy is dark and tender – like a good chunk of turkey – journey into deeper meaning; a filmic psychoanalysis of a man balancing on piano wire at the height of his fame and fortune. Read More